Recipe: Peanut Butter Ice Cream with Banana Chunks

Dessert Recipes from The Kitchn

There is approximately one serving of this left in my freezer. I almost ate it for lunch. But if my husband came home and found out I finished it without saving him one last bite, there'd be issues. Ice cream capable of causing marital discord: worth checking out, no?

Many of you who have taken a spin with the famous One-Ingredient Ice Cream have mentioned how good it is with peanut butter mixed in. Peanut butter and bananas are just a classic combination. And this is no one-ingredient ice cream, let me hasten to add: this is the full-on dairy treatment.

Instead of mixing chunks of peanut butter into a vanilla base (like this), I combined my peanut butter with the hot cream mixture so the base is smooth, creamy, and peanutty through and through. I used Jeni Britton's no-egg technique (as I do for almost all of my ice cream now).

One mistake I made that you shouldn't: I left my bananas out on the counter, and when I added in the chunks, they lowered the temperature of the churned ice cream, making it more soupy. So when I put it in the freezer, it lost a bit of its smooth texture as it hardened. Freeze (or at least chill) your banana pieces beforehand!

Tester's Notes

This ice cream should come with a warning label. Not because it's difficult to make — no, that part is quite easy and straightforward — but because it has the ability to disappear from your freezer in a flash! It is the ultimate peanut butter-banana mash-up.

Do be sure to follow Elizabeth's advice about chilling the banana pieces before adding them to the ice cream. I took it a step further and spread them in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet (so they wouldn't clump together), then placed it in the freezer while the ice cream base chilled. (And it worked well.)

While I love this recipe the way it is, there are so many other add-ins that would be delicious in this ice cream. Next time I plan to swap out the peanuts for mini peanut butter cups.

- Kelli, June 2015

Peanut Butter Ice Cream with Banana Chunks

Makes about 1 quart

1 ounce cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup natural peanut butter
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon cornstarch
3 1/2 cups half-and-half
2/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons corn syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch salt
2 ripe bananas, cut into small chunks and frozen or chilled
1/2 cup roasted, unsalted peanuts

The night before making your ice cream, place the ice cream machine base in the freezer to freeze.

In a medium bowl, whisk the cream cheese and peanut butter until smooth. Set aside. Prepare an ice bath in a larger bowl.

In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and 2 tablespoons of the half-and-half, making sure the cornstarch is dissolved. Pour the rest of the half-and-half into a large pot and whisk in the sugar and corn syrup. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, and then simmer, stirring frequently, for 4 minutes.

Remove from heat and whisk in the cornstarch mixture. Return the pot to medium-high heat, bring back to a boil, and cook for 1 more minute, stirring or whisking constantly, until the mixture is slightly thickened.

Pour the milk mixture into the bowl with the cream cheese and peanut butter and whisk until everything is combined and smooth. Add the salt and vanilla. (While it's still warm, taste and decide if you'd like to add more peanut butter for a stronger flavor.)

Set the bowl into the ice bath and cool, stirring every few minutes, until the liquid is thoroughly chilled. This should take about 25 minutes. It's even better if you can refrigerate it for several hours or overnight, but it should freeze fine after the ice bath if it's completely cool.

Churn the ice cream in an ice cream maker according to the machine's instructions. Add the frozen banana chunks and peanuts at the very end. Transfer the ice cream to a container and freeze for several hours until firm.

Recipe Notes:

  • While I used unsalted peanuts, salted peanuts would be really good, too.

This recipe has been updated - first published August 2010.

(Image credits: Kelli Dunn)

Per serving, based on 6 servings. (% daily value)
Calories
499
Fat
31.3 g (48.2%)
Saturated
13.3 g (66.5%)
Trans
0 g
Carbs
48.6 g (16.2%)
Fiber
2.8 g (11.2%)
Sugars
39.6 g
Protein
11.2 g (22.4%)
Cholesterol
57.4 mg (19.1%)
Sodium
84 mg (3.5%)